Mariah Carey Is Game of War’s New ‘Hero’

By Erik Oster 

Mobile game Game of War got a fair deal of attention for its viral ad campaign starring Kate Upton, courtesy of agency Untitled. After a spot featuring UFC fighter Conor McGregor which the brand launched without the help of the agency, Game of War seemingly has an unlikely successor for Upton (although it may just be a one-off) in Mariah Carey.

The new spot, presumably crafted by Untitled, opens on combatants fighting a seemingly hopeless battle. As one of them presses a button for help, tinkling piano from the 1993 Carey single “Hero” begins to play.

“To the north” says one of the fighters as an army arrives and the song reaches its chorus. “To the east,” says the other combatant, as the process starts over again, followed by yet another army providing relief to the west, complete with a man smashing enemies with giant mallet. Carey herself then arrives, taking down a dragon and saying “Time to be heroes, guys.”

It’s a definite improvement for the brand, whose previous ads relied solely on Upton’s sex appeal to sell the game, with seemingly little attention paid to the ads behind her assets. The humor here–in the juxtaposition of Carey’s song and the battle scenes–is certainly goofy, but in a way that fits the brand and provides at least some sort of pretext for the celebrity appearance.

Now the question is whether Carey will be returning for anotherĀ  ad (possibly featuring “Always Be My Baby?”) or if the brand will continue to mix it up.